What Is Ellen up to?—A Descent to the Tubman Days Is not Possible

first_imgPresident Ellen Johnson Seirleaf seems to be in desperation at this time.  This first elected  woman President of an African country, whom the world embraced as non other since Nelson Mandela, is asking the Liberian Legislature to give her more emergency powers than even President W.V.S. Tubman, the benevolent  dictator, did not have.The President wrote a letter dated October 2, 2014 to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Alex Tyler, calling on the National Legislature to grant her extraordinarily sweeping powers including, can you believe it? the suspension of Article 1 of the Liberian Constitution. Article 1 is the very heart and soul of the Constitution.  Without it, there is no constitution.  Without it, Liberia would descend into a dictatorship or one-person rule.We are positive that this is not what the President wants.It is Article 1 that states: “All power is inherent in the people.”  The word “inherent” means that this power is not given.  It comes naturally, is innate or inborn.  No one can take it away or  attempt to take it away.  The people are the source of all power in the land.So the President has asked the Legislature to do something that is beyond its authority; and something they are totally incapable of doing.In her letter, dated October 1, 2014, President Sirleaf asked the Legislature to “restrict/suspend certain fundamental rights of the Liberian citizens.  These fundamental rights include the suspension of several key and basic portions of the Constitution, including Article 1, Article 12 concerning labor services; Article 13, guaranteeing the free movement of what she called “certain individuals;” Article 14 which guarantees religious freedom; Article 15, which guarantees Freedom of speech and of the press; Article 17, which guarantees freedom of assembly; and Article 24, which guarantees every Liberian citizen the right to property.The Daily Observer immediately contacted the renowned constitutional and human rights lawyer, Counselor Tiawon Gongloe, and asked him to give his reflection on the President’s request to the Legislature.The first point he made was that the request is “belated.”  He cited Article 88 of the Constitution which states: “The President shall, immediately upon the declaration of a state of emergency, but not later than seven days thereafter, lay before the Legislature at its regular session or at a specially convened session, the facts and circumstances leading to such declaration.  The Legislature shall within seventy-two hours, by joint resolution voted by two-thirds of the membership of each house, decide whether the proclamation of a state of emergency is justified or whether the measures taken thereunder are appropriate. . .”Said Cllr. Gongloe, the President’s current request is belated, because she should have returned to the Legislature no later than seven days after August 7, 2014 when its granting of a state of emergency was announced (Daily Observer, August 7, 2014).The President having failed to abide by this constitutional provision, said Cllr. Gongloe, “cannot now come and ask the Legislature for new powers under this current state of emergency.”The second problem with the President’s October 1 request to the Legislature is that it is patently unconstitutional, said Cllr. Gongloe.  He quoted Article 87 of the Constitution which clearly states, “Emergency powers do not include the power to suspend or abrogate the Constitution, dissolve the Legislature or suspend or dismiss the Judiciary; and no constitutional amendment shall be promulgated during a state of emergency.”Several months ago this newspaper, the Daily Observer, asked editorially, who are the President’s advisors?  And we can most certainly ask now, in the wake of this current constitutional fiasco, who are her legal advisors.Given the glaring conflict between her request and what the Constitution says, it is clear that the President’s legal advisors did not do their homework—or did she consult with them or ask them their opinion at all?    We recall that the ruling True Whig Party’s rubber stamp Legislature, gave President Tubman perennial emergency powers.  That is how he became a “benevolent dictator.”  Liberia cannot and will not descend to the Tubman years.  The Liberian people have come too far to return to that.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

CPG member charged for teen’s murder

first_img3 months laterRural Constable Tony George, attached to the Community Policing Group (CPG) at Soesdyke, East Bank Demerara, on Monday found himself before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan, facing a charge of murder committed on Ricardo Singh.Murder accused: Tony GeorgeThe charge alleges that the 28-year-old George murdered the 15-year-old Singh of Diamond, East Bank Demerara on July 9, 2018, in the vicinity of the Soesdyke Public Road.According to Police Prosecutor Simone Payne, the victim was with several friends at a wedding house at Soesdyke, EBD on July 9, when an altercation ensued.Singh was subsequently arrested by George, and was later placed in the tray of the Police vehicle to be escorted to the Police Station. The Prosecution is contending that the accused and another male Rural Constable were on their way to the Police station when George allegedly stopped the vehicle, exited with the teen, and reportedly told the driver to leave.It was further alleged that, upon returning with several other officers, the Police driver found the teen with a stab wound to the abdomen, and George standing looking on in the presence of residents.However, defence attorney for George, Dexter Todd, informed the court that according to one of his client’s statements, filed by the Police, George had acted lawfully as an enforcement officer.Dead: Ricardo SinghGeorge has been remanded to prison until October 23.The body of 15-year-old Ricardo Singh, also called “Cardo”, was discovered in the wee hours of July 9 with several stab wounds, including one to his abdomen.Based on reports received, the former Diamond Secondary School student and his friends had left their respective homes on that dreaded Sunday with the intention of “taking a lime” at the Linden-Soesdyke Highway Junction, but had instead gone to the wedding house, which was close by.However, while there, a gang of men had allegedly attempted to relieve one of the teen’s friends of his gold chain and cash, resulting in the now dead teen intervening. His friend, whom he was helping, reportedly ran away leaving him behind.The young man, who would have been celebrating his 16th birthday three days after that incident, was subsequently found in a nearby trench with his intestines protruding. He was picked up and taken to the Diamond Diagnostic Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.According to Singh’s mother, her son had left home riding his pedal cycle just after noon that day with intention to meet his friends. The grieving mother related that, as night fell, she called her son several times on his mobile phone, but her calls went unanswered.His father had also attempted to call the young man, but to no avail. The devastated woman recalled her son’s friend visiting their home at about 08:00h and relating that the young man had been stabbed.Upon receiving the news, the teen’s father had contacted the Police, and had subsequently visited the Lyken Funeral Home, where he had positively identified his son. The woman noted that the friend with whom her son had gone to the wedding house had later been taken into custody.Meanwhile, this publication had reported that the young man had been misbehaving at the wedding house, and the Police had been called in to intervene. However, at the time, members of the Community Policing Group (CPG) had been patrolling the area, and as such, they had reportedly arrested the young man.last_img read more

Bantam Trackers struggle with games two and three at KIBIHT

first_imgUp next, the Bantam Trackers will be having a rematch tonight, Friday, against the Prairie Storm in the quarter-finals of the Tournament. Puck drop is 5:00 p.m. PST. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Northeast B.C. Bantam Trackers are currently in Kamloops for the Kamloops International Bantam Ice Hockey Tournament.After winning game one of the Tournament on Wednesday, January 1, the Trackers have not had the best of luck since that game.For game two, on Thursday, the Trackers took on the North Zone Kings.- Advertisement -This game was close throughout, eventually leading to some overtime. Despite a strong play, the Trackers were unable to win as they fell 3-2 to the Kings.Then for game three, on Friday morning, the Trackers would go on to face the Balgonie Prairie Storm.In that game, the Trackers only managed to score one goal, falling a heavy loss of 5-1 to the Prairie Storm.Advertisementlast_img read more

New bus stop installed closer to entrance of Fort St. John Hospital

first_img“We heard from community that it’s a priority for them to have a bus stop closer to the facility,” Director of Care at Northern Health, Katherine Peters said.Peters goes on to say the new bus stop will “make it safer for people visiting the hospital and Peace Villa, especially during the winter months.”Chairman of the mayor’s Accessibility Advisory Committee, Lori Slater points to the impact of such partnerships as the source of this accomplishment.- Advertisement -“We worked diligently with both the city and Northern Health to make this a reality,” Slater said. “It’s taken time, but I think from what was just originally an oversight has become reality today, and I think it’s been done right and its been done the way it should be.”Mayor Lori Ackerman, who was also on hand during the time of presentation, says she stands by her continued commitment to engage in new partnerships, illustrating her point with an anecdotal story from this year’s UBCM conference.“Interestingly at the recent UBCM, I had several communities coming forward and asking ‘how do you create these partnerships?’ Well, you pick-up the phone, you meet them, and you have these conversations.”Advertisement Mayor Ackerman goes on to say while Fort St. John has one of the youngest populations in the province, they also have one of the fastest growing senior demographic, which comes into play when planning for the future.Councillor Larry Evans and Councillor Gord Klassen were also present during the announcement outside of the hospital, as well as Regional Transit Manager for B.C. Transit, Ryan Little.last_img read more

‘Very nice chap’ persuaded Fuchs to join Leicester

first_img1 Leicester City’s latest signing was lured to the King Power Stadium by the manager he describes as a “very nice chap”.Nigel Pearson was involved in a handful of spats last season – ‘ostrich-gate’ being the most memorable – but he was all sweetness and light when he was convincing defender Christian Fuchs to join from Schalke.“I followed them last season, and it was an impressive escape at the end of last season,” Fuchs told the club’s website.“Everybody knows about it, everybody saw it and everybody’s talking about it – the great escape. I’ve seen other people working here, how they play, and it’s fun to watch.”“I think the philosophy of the coach fits me well. He gave me a nice phone call. He told me about the philosophy that Leicester has.“He’s simply a very nice chap. He’s a cool guy. He said to me that he’s very personal – he knows how to handle the players on a personal level, and he also convinced me about Leicester.” New Leicester City signing Christian Fuchs last_img read more